Self-care is not frivolous; it’s absolutely essential to an incredible life. When you fill your cup first, you can give to others authentically and deeply. As a mother of two, I know how important it is to take care of myself in order to pour out love, patience, kindness, and gentleness for my kids. Life as a mom can sometimes be stressful and challenging, but with the right self-care tools, you’ll be able to thrive instead of feeling like you’re trying to keep your head above water every day.

Our health is bigger than just the food on our plates. It may feel like a stretch to do something for yourself during this chapter of life, but without a healthy, happy mama, there is no happy baby. Learning to put ourselves first can be hard, but ultimately everyone around us suffers if we don’t.

You take care of your family, your home, and so much more; it can seem like you don’t have even one minute to dedicate to taking care of YOU.

The one tip I give my clients is to find time on Sunday’s to plan for the week ahead. Use the calendar on your phone or write on paper all of your commitments for the week, plus the meals you are cooking each day. Then, see where you can fit in time for exercise and self-care; for some people, exercise might be your self-care so that’s a win!

The purpose of self-care

The purpose is to rest your mind, body and soul. You need to feel relaxed in order for your nervous system to regulate, giving you the ability to regulate emotions and reactions in the inevitable chaotic moments of motherhood.

Trust me, I know it can be hard to find the time take care of yourself when you barely have time to go to the bathroom or shower some days as a mom. One thing that helped me was to look at the small moments in my day when I was scrolling social media or hanging out in the play room with my kids for hours and fit in some time then. I also try to wake up an hour before my kids do so I can have time to myself.

Instead of scrolling Instagram could you read scripture or a new book? Maybe you can do a 10-20 minute workout at home and include your kids. Get creative! My daughter loves to do squats with me and jumps and dances around the room when I have a workout video on. You don’t even need equipment to do an amazing workout. This toning workout is my go-to these days! Or wait until your kiddos are in bed and do the thing that gives you rest and inspires you to be your best self.

Motherhood is too important to spend it struggling with health. Join my private Fit and Healthy Mama Facebook group for insider tips, support, encouragement, recipes and more! 

Self-care health benefits

  • PRODUCTIVITY. Slowing down enough to calmly be in the present moment helps your brain focus for longer periods of time, leading to better productivity and checking items off your to-do list.

  • BOOST YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM. When our Parasympathetic Nervous System is activated, it puts your body into rest and restore mode, giving our bodies the chance to decompress from daily stresses. Then the body has the opportunity to build its defenses against those nasty cold bugs.

  • IMPROVES COMPASSION. The more you take care of yourself, the better you feel. When you treat yourself with love and compassion, it pours out to our loved ones. 

  • GET TO KNOW YOURSELF BETTER. You can reconnect with yourself by determining when self-care tools really light you up and make you feel your best. You may even try something new like painting or bike riding to expand your toolbox.

  • GIVE MORE TO OTHERS. Some people believe that self-care is selfish, but how will you take care of your family and show up for your friends if you are not well? You won’t. Self-care keeps you healthy and able to show up for the people you love most. 

Self-care tools

EAT WELL: Taking care of yourself means fueling your body with whole foods so you can feel your best.

JOURNALING: Spend 5–15 minutes every morning free writing what’s on your mind and setting an intention
for the day.

MORNING MEDITATION: Start with one minute and build your way up. You might love it, and you’ll likely feel
massive shifts.

ALIGNED EXERCISE: Find exercise that’s truly enjoyable, invigorating, and relaxing for you. Practice regularly,
if not every day.

MASSAGE: Ask your partner or a friend to give you a shoulder massage or make an appointment with
your favorite masseuse.

BATH: Take a hot bath a few times a week to pamper yourself and engage the relaxation response in your
nervous system. A glass of red wine could make this even more relaxing!

HOT TOWEL SCRUB: Fill your sink with hot water, dip a washcloth in, wring it out, and scrub your body
firmly in gentle circles. Always make circles toward your heart and go lightly near sensitive areas.

DRY BRUSHING: Using a natural bristle brush, start at your feet and brush dry skin in quick upward motions.
This greatly improves circulation and drains lymphatic fluid (the root of water retention).

OIL MASSAGE: Before you shower, massage your entire body with coconut oil to protect your skin from the
drying and draining effects of hot water.

PAMPERING: Schedule manicures, pedicures, hair appointments, facials, or whatever primping activities you
like to partake in for the next six months – you’ll feel like a new woman.

CLOSET PURGING: Invite a friend over and go through your closet and drawers together. Throw away the
things that you haven’t worn in the past year and/or that don’t make you feel fantastic. You should open your
closet to clothes that make you feel amazing. (Yes, this includes undergarments!)

CALL A FRIEND: Unloading hard thoughts or feelings with a loved one can usually help release stress and anxiety.

SAY NO: Sometimes saying no to commitments is good for you and allows you to slow down to do the things that are healthier in the long term. Saying yes when you mean yes and no when you mean no is authentic, honest and healthy.

CREATE: Whether you like to cook, bake, paint or DIY, tap into your creative side.

Whichever self-care tool works best for you, ask for support and carve out time in your day or week. Set calendar events or reminders on your phone and schedule self-care as if it were a very important doctor’s appointment so that you don’t allow anything to get in the way.

So go on… run a hot bath, light some candles and start noticing the miracles that appear in your life.

Ready for the next step? I’ve created a FREE Healthy Mama Starter Kit just for you. It’s loaded with lifestyle and nutrition tips, tools and recipes to take you from tired and bloated to leaner and more energetic so you can feel your best and do motherhood even better.

 

 

 

Be Well,

Jessica Shane

Certified Health Coach